Wakefield Trinity: Weight of expectation mounting on Wakefield

Chris Chester.
Chris Chester.

WAKEFIELD TRINITY will face a different type of pressure when they play host to Widnes Vikings tonight.

Trinity have won four of their last five matches and boss Chris Chester admitted the weight of expectation is mounting on his side.

Denis Betts.

Denis Betts.

The recent run has lifted Wakefield to sixth in Betfred Super League and another victory would boost their prospects of a place in the Super-8s for a second successive season.

Chester knows Widnes will be on a high after picking up their first win, a shock 37-24 success at Leigh Centurions last Saturday, but reckons it is all about how his team approach the job at hand.

“They had a win last weekend and they’ve been working hard for each other, but just not quite getting results,” Chester said of the second-bottom visitors.

“It is a good test of our attitude because it’s probably the first game we are maybe going to go in as favourites.

“Every other game we have been underdogs and we will see how we handle it.”

Last Saturday’s 38-18 thrashing of Catalans Dragons in Perpignan was arguably Trinity’s most dominant performance of the season so far, but Chester insisted: “We are not getting carried away, certainly the staff and players aren’t.

“There’s a long way to go and for us to get into the Super-8s we need to win the majority of our home games and pick up a few away, like we have done. We need to get a result and so do they. It will be the most desperate side that wins.”

Chester will select from the 17 on duty last week plus James Batchelor and Anthony Walker.

In contrast, Widnes coach Denis Betts will make a series of changes.

Keanan Brand, Ted Chapelhow, Gil Dudson, Alex Gerrard, Joe Mellor and Corey Thompson could all be called up to tonight’s 17, with Stefan Marsh, Greg Burke, Danny Walker and Macgraff Leuluai dropping out from the team which beat Leigh.

Wakefield Trinity: from Grix, Jones-Bishop, Arundel, Tupou, Johnstone, Williams, Finn, Fifita, Wood, Allgood, Ashurst, Kirmond, Arona, Miller, Hadley, Hirst, Huby, Batchelor, Walker.

Widnes Vikings: from Armstrong, Brand, Bridge, Brooks, J Chapelhow, T Chapelhow, Craven, Dudson, Gerrard, Gilmore, Hanbury, Houston, Johnstone, Manuokafoa, Mellor, Olbison, Runciman, Thompson, Whitley.

Referee: Chris Kendall (Huddersfield).

Kick-off: Tonight, 8pm.